Luck. It’s a funny old thing. Sometimes you can be on a good run of it and others you find yourself cursing it. I don’t know why in particular the following anecdotes have been in my head for a while. They just have been and needed writing down to make some room for other things.
Nine years ago, I was working as a Post Office counter clerk in Eastbourne. It was a fairly repetitive job, particularly on Mondays when the rather large population of senior citizens rocked in to collect their pension. Talking to them always threw up different topics – many of them about their belief that I was actually called Tim.
One Monday, a tiny old Geordie lady I had never seen before shuffled up to the counter. Before I even had the chance to say hello, she proceeded to tell me about how lucky she was. The conversation went on and I handed over her money.
As she was about to go, she said “Touch my hand and you’ll be lucky too.” “No, you’re alright thanks,” I said, aware that there was a growing queue. She gave me a look that said ‘I’m not moving until you do.’ “You’re not going to move until I do, are you?” I said with my best nice-young-man smile.
She nodded, I reached through the small gap in the window and touched the back of her hand, she smiled knowingly and went without another word. The following week, I won a tenner on the lottery, the office sweepstake on the Grand National and, along with my Dad, £100 on a fruit machine at the local social club.
A girl also left her phone number for me with a colleague at work. She turned out to be a right psycho, but the rest was welcome. Weirdly, I never saw the little old lady again.
A couple of years later, I had left the Post Office, completed a journalism qualification and moved to Brighton where I thought there would be plenty of career opportunities. It’s fair to say that living there was the most miserable year of my life.
Nothing bad happened. It’s just that my experience of what I still think of as a nice city was shit and I was really unhappy there. One day I was out shopping when I got crapped on by a seagull.
A witty person walking past said: “Don’t worry mate, that’s good luck!” Naively, I thought he may be right and that my luck was changing. Within the next hour I got dumped via text and wrongly accused of shoplifting. Ho hum.
As I was wondering how to finish this post, fortune smiled on me again. I was shortlisted in the Dads category of the BritMums Brilliance in Blogging Awards.
I’m in some highly esteemed company on the shortlist, so any votes you fancy sending my way would be gratefully appreciated. Given the topic of this post, all that remains is for me to wish the other dads on the shortlist good luck. May the best man win!